Elsie B. Bohensky, age 92, of Dushore, PA, passed away Friday evening, December 1, 2023, with her loving family at her side.
Born Elsie Bernice Sheerer on November 24, 1931, in Forest City, PA, she was the oldest of four siblings to the late Silas James Sr. and Bernice Elizabeth Nelson Sheerer. Shortly after in 1934, the little family moved to Dushore and rented an apartment for a short time over Bob Kast’s gas station. They then moved to their permanent home, a house and barn on five acres purchased from the late Fred Saxer one mile south of Dushore.
Elsie began her education in the Cherry Mills School in 1937. With a quick mind and a penchant for learning, she progressed steadily until graduation in 1949 from Cherry Twp. High School. Her school years were happy ones. In addition to regular lessons and homework, there were piano lessons, cheerleading, girls’ basketball, and a waitress job at the Green Swan, as well as a steady boyfriend, Stanley Bohensky. Stanley was a good friend, classmate, and her “steady beau”. Eventually they were married on July 28, 1951, in St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Mildred. They built a new home in Dushore, in 1953 and raised their children there.
In addition to being a mother and homemaker, Elsie had other interests. Music was foremost. She began singing in the Lutheran Church Choir at age eleven. Music was part of her upbringing. Her mother had a lovely alto voice and along with her sister Ruth sang their way through many tedious household chores. For nearly 40 years, she was soprano soloist, choir director, and the organist at St. Basil’s Catholic Church in Dushore. She was also a member emeritus of the Dushore Music Club.
She was a serious gardener, some vegetables but mostly flowers. Her husband Stanley once commented “If you don’t stop her, she’ll plant all the way to Towanda!” Lessons handed down from her mother and mother-in-law were the foundation for many ethnic recipes for the home. She made bread, cinnamon buns, beautiful pies, made to order birthday cakes and cookies, ethnic dishes galore, and baked beans!!
During their early marriage, Stan worked for Harrington Dairy and also as a projectionist for the Dushore Theater. Later he became a carpenter and contractor, and Elsie became the “other half” of the business. She took phone messages, directed supplies to their destination, was the payroll clerk, tax preparer, and most importantly the “go-fer”, all before cellphones. Any one of the children who happened to be home at the time, were loaded up into a jeep, pickup truck, or a station wagon and would go along on these trips. They could tell you where the good food was and where every restroom was in a 100-mile radius in any direction. Later in life Elsie was a clerk Charnitski’s Market; and a teller at the First National Bank of Dushore.
Elsie’s greatest joy in life was her children and family. She was always there to share their ambitions and accomplishments, and sometimes their disappointments. She watched her children grow to become honest, responsible, and caring adults. The succeeding generations are even more rewarding. “Grandma Elsie” would gladly babysit anytime, listen to every little story, kiss every boo-boo, and provide a soft lap for any sleepy toddler. Family history was also an avid interest – she was the prime mover to have family reunions and to keep track of all generations on the family bush. Knitting wedding and baby afghans and word puzzles were the present pastimes. As of today, Elsie’s family includes four children and the wonderful people they married, ten grandchildren, and twelve great grandchildren.
Elsie is survived by her husband of 72 years, Stanley Andrew Bohensky. She is also survived by her four children and their spouses: Stanley Leo and Kathy McMahon Bohensky of Dushore, Karen Elizabeth and Thomas McDonald of Dushore, Angela Mary Lee Fair of Reading, and Andrew James and Megan Getz Bohensky of Laporte. Grandchildren: Jolene Elizabeth and John Berardoni, Stanley Eugene “Stosh” and Janette Lopez Bohensky, Jennifer Elizabeth and Lucas Manero, Patrick Francis and Allie Hottenstein McDonald, Melanie Teresa and Daniel Moyer, Katelyn Berneice and John Fischer, Daniel William and Erin Cieniewicz Lee, Elise Mary Bohensky, Isaiah Joel Bohensky, and Angelina Marie Bohensky. Great grandchildren: John Joseph Berardoni, Juliana Marie Berardoni, Philip Louis Bohensky, Lucille Joan Bohensky, Stella Marie Faustina Manero, Molly Elizabeth McDonald, Jase Patrick McDonald, Oliver Daniel Moyer, Nova Elizabeth Moyer, Caleb John Fischer, Evan Thomas Fischer, and Emmett William Lee. She is also survived by her sister Carolyn Elizabeth “Betsy” Sheerer, and several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Besides her parents, she was predeceased by her brother and sister-in-law, Silas J. Jr, and Nancy Smith Sheerer, her sister and brother-in-law, Ruth Mary and Peter Zolnerowich, a son-in-law William Lee Jr., and an infant granddaughter Grace Bohensky.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on December 7, 2023, at 11:00 AM in St. Basil’s Church, Dushore, PA, with her pastor, Rev. Thomas J. Major, presiding. Interment will follow in St. Francis of Assisi Cemetery, Mildred, PA.
Family and friends may call at St. Basil’s Church on Thursday morning, December 7, 2023, from 10:00 AM until the start of Mass at 11:00 AM.
Memorial contributions may be made to Dushore Fire and Ambulance, PO Box 1, Dushore, PA 18614, or to a charity of one’s choice.
Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Homer Funeral Home, 206 Water St., Dushore, PA 18614
To send condolences or sign the e-guestbook, please go to www.homerfuneralhome.com.